Saturday, May 18, 2019

What's happening this week - 5/19

On Monday, in lieu of their monthly fly tying session, the Kisatchie Fly Fishers will hold a special program on "Rod Building Basics". Time is 6:30pm.  Roger Breedlove will present on what goes into assembling a custom built fly rod, including the selection of blanks, corks, reel seats and more. Those participating in the club's rod building clinic on June 29th can order blanks at this meeting. For more info, go to www.kisatchiefly.org.

On Tuesday, the Contraband Fly Casters hold their monthly meeting at St. Paul Lutheran Church on 1620 East Prien Lake Road in Lake Charles. Fly tying and discussion at 6:00pm, meeting at 7:00pm.  Guests are welcome. For more info, go to www.contrabandflycasters.net.

Also on Tuesday, the Lafayette Kayak Fishing Club holds their monthly meeting at Pack and Paddle on 601 East Pinhook in Lafayette. Time is 6:00pm. For more info, go to www.lafayettekayakfishing.com.

On Thursday, the New Orleans Fly Fishers hold the 2nd of their twice-monthly fly tying sessions at St. Francis Xavier Church Hall on 444 Metairie Road. Time is 7:00pm. Bring your tools, if none, the club has sets for use during the session. Bring $1 for materials. For more info, go to www.neworleansflyfishers.com.

Also on Thursday, Pack & Paddle will host a free seminar on "Fly Fishing the World" at their store on 601 East Pinhook in Lafayette. Time is 6:00pm. Alaska and Louisiana fishing guide Ron Ratliff will talk about various salmon, rainbow trout, Dolly Varden in Alaska. John Williams will speak on a trip to a remote area of the Yucatan for bonefish, permit, snook and tarpon. Stephen and Lilly Outten will talk on camping and fishing creeks of North Carolina. Barret Bertucci will speak on a DIY bonefish trip to the Bahamas. For more info, go to www.packpaddle.com.

Starting Friday afternoon, it's the 10th annual "Bass On The Fly" fly fishing tournament at Lake Fork Marina in Alba, Texas. It's a CPR tournament with total length of five longest (5) largemouth bass with divisions for Boat and Kayak.  Entry fee is $70 and can be done online at www.ianglertournament.com or onsite Friday. Friday afternoon there's casting games, kayak demos, and from 2:00pm to 6:00pm is the annual Sunfish Tournament (optional $10 entry) followed by the Captains meeting and fishing report. Saturday is bass tournament day with weigh-in at 2:00pm followed by awards and door prizes. Proceeds go to Casting For Recovery and FFI Texas Council. For more info, go to www.bassonthefly.com.

On Saturday, it's the PAC Fly Fishing Journey kayak tournament out of PAC Kayak Rentals in Montegut. Captains meeting 5:00am, shotgun launch is 5:30am, weigh-in from 2:00pm to 3:00pm. Entry fee $25. Heaviest stringer of two slot reds, with Sheepshead and Leopard Red side pots ($5 each). Fly fishing only, boat checks before launch. Human-powered paddle or pedal craft only. Sponsored by Fly Life Company, Chad Foster, Pack & Paddle and PAC Kayak Rentals. For more info, or to register, go to www.packayakrental.com.

Monday, May 13, 2019

What's happening this week - 5/12

On Monday, the Red Stick Fly Fishers hold their monthly general meeting at the Wildlife and Fisheries building on Quail Drive in Baton Rouge. Casting practice at 6:30pm, meeting at 7:00pm. On the agenda: this week's upcoming Spring Catch-n-Eat marsh fishing trip out of Golden Meadow. The public is welcome. For more, go to www.rsff.org.

On Tuesday, the North Louisiana Fly Fishers hold their monthly meeting at the Red River National Wildlife Refuge in Bossier City. Gathering starts at 6:00pm, meeting at 6:45pm, program at 7:00pm. On the agenda: Glen 'Catch' Cormier and Larry Offner will present on the "Magnificient Seven", easy-to-tie panfish flies. Catch will also talk about conservation issues in the FFI Gulf Coast Council. The public is welcome! For more, go to www.northlaflyfishers.org.

On Thursday, the New Orleans Fly Fishers will hold the first of their twice-monthly fly tying sessions at St. Francis Xavier community building on 444 Metairie Road. Time is 7:00pm. Bring $1 for materials. Bring your tools, if none, the club has sets for use during the session. Beginners welcome! For more, go to www.neworleansflyfishers.com.

Also on Thursday, Pack and Paddle will hold a "Fly Tying Happy Hour" at their store on 601 East Pinhook in Lafayette. Time is 6:00pm. Bring your vise, tools, materials, and PnP will bring the beer from Urban South Brewing Company. This event is free and open to all tiers, non-tiers, and anyone who just wants to check out what others are tying. For more info, go to www.packpaddle.com.

On Saturday, Orvis of Baton Rouge will hold another "Fly Fishing 101" session at their store on 7601 Bluebonnet Blvd.  Time is 8:00am to 10:30am. No fee, but pre-registration is required as seats are limited. Orvis FF101 is a one-day, 2.5 hour clinic designed to introduce the basics of fly fishing and fly casting. To register, contact 225-757-7286.

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Fly tournament options abound Memorial Day weekend

Competitive fly fishing is all the rage among the growing numbers of under-40 fly anglers nationwide.  And among some of us older folks, too. Taking a page from the kayak fishing community, these events combine comradery with learning experiences and shared knowledge, while doing what we all love most - actual fishing!

Well come Saturday, May 25th - the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend - regional fly anglers have options. Not one... not two... but three (!) tournament options to choose from.  Fortunately, only two are single-day events, the third is summer-long.

First off, Saturday kicks off the annual CCA STAR tournament. Once again, there's a Fly Fishing Division with two regional divisions, East and West. Each division will award a $1,500 gift card from Academy Sports + Outdoors to the fly angler who catches the heaviest speckled trout. Sponsored by Costa del Mar, the fly fishing division has been very competitive the last few years. To participate, an angler must be a CCA member -and- enroll in the STAR tournament (separate fee).  The STAR tournament continues through Labor Day. All rules can be found on www.ccastar.com.

Incidently, while other CCA states have a similiar tournament, only Florida has a Fly Fishing Division. Louisiana CCA members can participate in the Florida STAR if they have a Florida saltwater license and a Florida CCA STAR entry tag. Unlike Louisiana STAR, the FLSTAR is CPR (catch-photo-release) with an approved measuring device. Longest of each species wins. The species list is quite extensive: snook, seatrout, non-tagged redfish, tarpon, grouper, dolphin, and kingfish.

May 25th also is the 10th annual "Bass on the Fly" fly fishing tournament out of Lake Fork, Texas. The BOTF tournament is usually held the first Saturday of May each year, but was rescheduled this year due to the Bassmasters Elite tournament held that weekend on Lake Fork.  

BOTF is a CPR tournament with total inches for five (5) bass. Activities kick off on Friday with free casting clinics, product booths and kayak demos, and the Captains meeting and guide report at 6:00pm that evening. There's also a Big Sunfish tourney from 3:00pm to 6:00pm.  Saturday is the main event with lines-in after 6:00am and weigh-in  before 2:00pm. Categories include Boat and Non-Boat (kayak, canoe, float tube, bank, etc). The event is open to the public. Entry fee is $70 per person.

Registration and fish entry is through the iAngler app. Anglers who register prior to May 15th are automatically eligible for a drawing for a Sage Smallmouth rod.  Proceeds benefit Reel Recovery and the FFI Texas Council. For complete info, go to www.bassonthefly.org.

Also on May 25th, it's the inaugural "PAC Fly Fishing Journey" out of PAC Kayak Rentals in Montegut. This is a weigh-in fly fishing paddle/pedal tournament for two biggest slot reds ($25), with optional calcuttas for Big Red, Leopard Red, and Sheepshead ($5 each). Shotgun launch from the marina at 5:30am with weigh-in from 2:00pm to 3:00pm. Food will be provided at the weigh-in for no extra cost. For more info, go to www.packayakrental.com and click on Fly Fishing Journal.

Sunday, May 05, 2019

What's happening this week - 5/5

On Wednesday, the Bayou Coast Kayak Fishing Club and Masseys Outfitters will host the 2018-2019 Masseys Fish Pics Awards Ceremony at their New Orleans location on 509 North Carrollton. Time is 7:00pm (social) with awards at 7:30pm. The Fish Pics tournament is a free, months-long CP (catch-photo) tournament for BCKFC members hosted by Masseys, with Conventional, Fly Rod, and Youth Divisions. The Fly Rod division awards the most points based on total cumulative inches of redfish, speckled trout, and bass. For more info, go to www.bckfc.org.

On Thursday, Orvis of Baton Rouge will hold a weekday version of their "Fly Fishing 101" sessions at their store on 7601 Bluebonnet in Perkins-Rowe. Time is 4:00pm. FF101 is a free one-day, 2.5-hour clinic designed to introduce the basics of fly fishing and fly casting.  No cost, but pre-registration is required as class size is limited. For details, call 225-757-7286.

This Saturday, Pack & Paddle in Lafayette will hold a "Fly Tying Level 1" workshop at their Outpost back of the store on 601 E. Pinhook. Time is 9:30am. Cost is $20. FTL1 is a one-day, 2-hour clinic covering the basics of fly tying, including hands-on tying of two effective flies for Louisiana. Tools and materials are provided for use during the session. Class size limited, so pre-registration is required. To register, go to www.packpaddle.com.

Later on Saturday, Pack & Paddle in Lafayette will hold a "Fly Fishing FUNdamentals" at their Outpost back of the store on 601 E. Pinhook. Time is 1:00pm. Cost is $40. FFFun is a one-day, 3-hour clinic covering the basics of fly fishing, with emphasis on gear, flies, techniques that work on Louisiana waters. Followed by hands-on casting session. Class size limited, so pre-registration is required.  To register, go to www.packpaddle.com.

Also on Saturday, the Lafayette Kayak Fishing Club will hold their annual "Oak Point Classic" tournament at PAC Kayak Rentals in Pointe-aux-Chenes. Entry fee is $25 + $1.25 Paypal fee. Open to the public. Heaviest weight of 2 reds and 3 specks, with a heaviest trout calcutta. Also Leopard Red category. Artificial tackle only. Registration deadline 12 noon, Friday May 10th. Fishing time 6:00am (shotgun launch) to 3:00pm (sign in to weigh deadline). For more info, or to register, go to www.lafayettekayakfishing.com.